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Thread: Walter Kelly

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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Calvert, Md,USA
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    Default Walter Kelly

    I have used Walter Kelly in the past and always been happy with their customer Service. Today goes way beyond. I checked their website looking for 2 russ queens. They showed non available. I tried several other sources with no return calls 24 hours later. I called WK and was asking if they could steer me to a supplier. I explained my queen less situation. She (I feel bad I can't remember her name) said give her a couple hours, they had some down on the farm, or she would check with Rossman. She called a few hours later to tell me she was still working on it. She called a couple hours later and said Rossman sells in lots of 500. she said they are bring up some R Queens for a Bee Festival and she would "pluck" two for me if I could wait till Tues. for them to be shipped. "Yeper Dog" I said.
    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you,

    Rick SoMd

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Waveland, In, USA
    Posts
    18

    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    I am in my first year as a beek and have bought from Kelley a few times. I have been very please with the phone support. My first two orders I did not have a catalog just going off there web sight, which does not give a product number, and the sale person was very helpful. I love their frames as well. They have me as a customer for life.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Cocke County, Tennessee
    Posts
    4

    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    After searching all over for Russian queens and bees this spring (avoided some with bad reports on this forum), I found out that Rossman and most other large breeders have only Italians or Carniolans. I hope that that Kelley didn't just tell you what you wanted to hear just to look good.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Clarkson, KY. USA
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    164

    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    Quote Originally Posted by susiequeen View Post
    After searching all over for Russian queens and bees this spring (avoided some with bad reports on this forum), I found out that Rossman and most other large breeders have only Italians or Carniolans. I hope that that Kelley didn't just tell you what you wanted to hear just to look good.
    Walter Kelley has been in the bee business for 87 years. Bees are our business. We would never tell a customer something just to "look good". Our Russian hybrid packages and queens we sell are hybrids. We do not claim they are anything more as they are openly mated. The queen mother's are from Dwight Porters stock. I have about 75 hives and easily half are the Russian Hybrids. I find these to be an excellent bee if you are prepared to manage for swarming.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Cocke County, Tennessee
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    4

    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick 1456 View Post
    .....She called a couple hours later and said Rossman sells in lots of 500. she said they are bring up some R Queens for a Bee Festival .....Rick SoMd
    A check with Rossman's website reveils that they only sell Italian. If the person on the phone said the Russian queens were coming from Rossman, then I would assume that would be misleading? Maybe you just misunderstood.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Clarkson, KY. USA
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    164

    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    If the operator on the phone told you that the Russian Hybrids were from Rossman she was in error. And I appologize.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Calvert, Md,USA
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    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    There was never any misunderstanding. I know the WK Russians are open mated. This is no secrete nor subliminal attempt to pass off something that isn't. Just because the Rossman website doesn't advertise anything but Italians and Carniolans to John Q public, does not mean they do not import to sell to other large interests. In as much as I was the one privy to the conversation, I know what I was told and I did not give a verbatum of the conversation on this forum. The Queens came from WK yards as a customer service to me. Why would someone make up a story when they could have helped me the whole time, and I would have been just as satisfied.
    Someone needs to find something better to do their time If you have a problem with WK, start your own thread

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Chesterfield, NH
    Posts
    504

    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick 1456 View Post
    I have used Walter Kelly in the past and always been happy with their customer Service. Today goes way beyond. I checked their website looking for 2 russ queens. They showed non available. I tried several other sources with no return calls 24 hours later. I called WK and was asking if they could steer me to a supplier. I explained my queen less situation. She (I feel bad I can't remember her name) said give her a couple hours, they had some down on the farm, or she would check with Rossman. She called a few hours later to tell me she was still working on it. She called a couple hours later and said Rossman sells in lots of 500. she said they are bring up some R Queens for a Bee Festival and she would "pluck" two for me if I could wait till Tues. for them to be shipped. "Yeper Dog" I said.
    Thank you, Thank you, Thank you,

    Rick SoMd
    Late Season Queen Loss

    D. Conlon / Warm Colors Apiary

    I have been receiving calls looking for mated Queens in October. This is disturbing to me as it demonstrates the poor preparation we are giving our new beekeepers. Asking for mated Queens this late in the season shows a lack of understanding of some very basic behavior and seasonal dynamics in the honeybee colony. Not to blame the victim, so read the following as a brief explanation of why late season re-queening is a poor management strategy, and the available remedies are less then desirable. Resources (yes size of your apiary matters) in the form of number of colonies. Queens with worker support offer the only solution to saving a late season Queen less hive.

    As we approach mid-October finding a hive Queen less is a serious problem. Little can be done to introduce a new Queen. In fact, it is unlikely a mated Queen can be purchased this late in the season and even if successfully introduced is unlikley to survive winter. Replacing Queens should be done in August. This allows time to lay a round or two of brood before the Queen shuts down laying for the winter. It is a fact supported by numerous studies; that a queen surrounded by her daughters is four times more likely to survive the winter then one support by unrelated workers. Late season re-queening that does not allow time for a Queen to lay and hatch her direct offspring. Without her offspring she is more likely to fail during the winter. So when you call me for a Queen in October know my answer will not be encouraging. Even in Georgia, my suppliers stop rearing Queens in September due to the poor quality & lack of sufficient drones for mating.

    Southern producers stop rearing Queens in September, and most of us in the North have re-queened in August, or combined weak hives using our best Queens to carry us through winter. So what are the options when you discover you have a Queen less hive late in the fall?

    1) First, are you really Queen less? You must see the Queen if inspecting in late September or October. Queens are finished laying eggs when foraging ends and temperatures drop to freezing nights, and 50F degree-days. Russian or Carniolan Queens stop earlier then Italians so you cannot determine Queenlessness by the lack of eggs or brood from September on into late fall. You must confirm the Queen's presence by seeing her not the presence of eggs, larvae or capped brood. Have you marked your Queens? This is one time when a brightly marked Queen really make a difference. By the way, a lack of honey and pollen will stop brood rearing earlier and means you will lose the colony to winter starvation.
    If the colony has many drones in October then it is probable you have a Queen less situation. A colony with a Queen has forced most of the drones out of the hive this late in the fall. This has been particularly true this year after the long dry summer and less than normal honey production.
    Late season Queen Cells are an indication that the colony is attempting to replace the Queen. September and later Queen Cells are rarely successful as drones and conditions no longer support successful mating. It is also likely that there are no viable larvae available to be transformed into a Queen.
    2) Therefore, you know, for sure, there is no Queen in the hive. This is confirmed by repeated studies to account for 20% of failed hives every winter. A Queen less hive will not survive the winter. What to do?
    Combine with a stronger Queen right colony preferred action. One very good reason to keep hives as pairs. Understand that you can split an over-wintered hive that is strong, but you cannot split two weak hives that have died. One strong hive is worth two or three weak colonies in the spring.
    Add a Queen on a comb of her workers (or brood) The second best manipulation. Queens not support by her direct offspring rarely survive the winter. Pheromones or daughters do a better job of caring for their mother. In other words, it is not simply a matter of successfully introducing a Queen; she must have the support of her offspring, or time to produce offspring that cares for her. In October, it is unlikely either is possible unless you manage multiple colonies. I keep a dozen strong Nuc colonies to cover the late season Queen less situations (no they are not for sale). Yes, keeping an extra Nuc for your apiary is a good management practice.
    Do nothing and the colony will fail failure is guaranteed.

    3) Desperate times, desperate measures. I never support the notion that you do nothing to save your bees. If doing nothing is your automatic reaction to difficult management decisions, then get out of beekeeping. All beekeepers find themselves in these difficult positions, when, how, and what to do, but as a guitar player friend once said "it doesn't matter what you practice, but practice something". In other words, do not desert your bees by taking no action; make some attempt to save them even if action is not likely to succeed.

    My final advice is to take charge of your beekeeping. What you say? Stop seeing beekeeping as a commodity that you buy off the shelf. Honeybees are an incredible species deserving of our best efforts to raise and protect them. At this time we are failing the honeybee by leaving it to others to fix their/our problems. Yes, we all start somewhere, but those of us who see each other as capable beekeepers also respect those who have reached a sustainable level of beekeeping. This is the goal all beekeepers should be striving to accomplish. Keeping your bees alive and having the ability to replace colonies from your strongest hives, is sustainable beekeeping. The bees need competent managers. As someone once said, "Don't be a bee haver, be a bee keeper".


    Dan Conlon
    President Massachusetts Beekeepers Association
    Warm Colors Apiary
    2 South Mill River
    South Deerfield, MA 01373
    warmcolors@verizon.net
    warmcolorsapiary.com
    413-665-4513




    Hope this help you


    BEE HAPPY Jim 134

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Calvert, Md,USA
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    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    I've really tried not to allow myself to get sucked into this. All I wanted was to pay WK homage for helping me out. Frankly, I don't care if the WK rep told me she called a Tibetan Monk or a Bedowin Sheppard to see if they had R Queens. I got what I asked for, in a timely fashion, and if I lived closer to Ky and wasn't married, I'd have asked her for a date Since I can't use non Disney language,,,fooey on you all.
    Mr. Conlan, you are THE President, WOW, The president,,,,you assume too much. Because I was looking for queens after Aug, you assume I have mismanaged my hives, I'm a victim, and you proceed to give a lecture on late queen intro. Actually, I appreciate the info, it makes sense and I will post it in the 101 section for others to benefit as soon as I'm done here. You do not know the circumstances regarding my need for queens after Aug. Trust me, I was following your protocol, doing something and not nothing. If you want to know what I was doing, go check my posts, you will find out. I doubt your arrogance will allow you, but you seem to have a lot of time on your hands to engage on this thread.
    Bee Happy

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Clarkson, KY. USA
    Posts
    164

    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    OK, the secrets out now. We do get these from Tibetan monks and the Bedowins do the transport. But I think it is the Gregorian chanting they are subjected to just before shipping, that really makes the difference. There's just nothing like a good gregorian chant!
    The bottom line is, if we can help a customer and fellow beekeeper, we will do everything in our power to do so.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Dec 1999
    Location
    DuPage County, Illinois USA
    Posts
    9,590

    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    Quote Originally Posted by Rick 1456 View Post
    I doubt your arrogance will allow you, but you seem to have a lot of time on your hands to engage on this thread.
    Arrogance nothing. Lighten up. Jim posted some information written by another that he thought might be useful. If it doesn't help or apply, simply move on.
    Regards, Barry

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
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    Calvert, Md,USA
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    Default Re: Walter Kelly

    My apologies Jim . Since my thread was quoted, seemed it was somewhat directed at me. Good info like that will benefit more if posted to the proper place, not in the consumer reports section IMO where all that was wanted was to share a good experience with WK.
    I have taken my meds and moved on.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Cullman Co., AL
    Posts
    196

    Thumbs Up Re: Walter Kelly

    Rick,

    I am happy for you that you had a great experience with WK. That is what this thread is about. I have used them for years, and each order begets better service. The web site has improved some, but I still enjoy the personal conversations with their staff. That alone makes the call worth it!

    I think they are having a sale over Thankgiving? I will check, but I am just outside the magic numbers, so I will have to get a pallet of boxes closer to home.

    The WK company has kept that family atmosphere, which is hard to find today. Holy cow, personal service, what a great business model!

    Kind regards
    Stonefly7

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